Somebody out there sure loves me.
Yesterday, I received an email from Yellow Brick Home, informing me that I have been “anonymously gifted a custom mini, modern portrait” of Scooby the elderpin.
I’m so excited I could almost cry!
If you’ve never seen the awesome pet portraits that Yellow Brick Home offers through its tiny division called The Pet Shop, go check ‘em out now. You might even recognize some familiar fuzzy faces from the blogosphere in the pet gallery!
Meanwhile, I’m now furiously sifting through pictures of the elderpin that I can send to Yellow Brick Home for inspiration as they turn him into a piece of fine art!
To whoever is responsible for this beautiful opportunity:
Thanks with all my heart - and Scooby’s, too!
Are you our secret admirer? Do you have a portrait of your pet?
There’s a room in my house that the dogs are obsessed with.
Actually, I have long tried to keep them out of the room with a closed door that also helped me avoid thinking about the disorganized mess within.
Officially, the room is my office, but it has always been more of a repository for stuff I didn’t want to deal with. Like paperwork and mail I couldn’t decide if I should hold onto or toss and clothes I couldn’t cram into in my primary closet.
But last weekend, my friend Shelley came over with the sole purpose of helping me turn this cluttered room into a functional space that would bring me peace and inspiration – without spending any significant money.
Truth be told, I was a little scared and embarrassed that the room had gotten so out of control.
But Shelley has a way of bringing out the fun in life.
Our project isn’t finished yet, but thanks to our progress so far, I’m now as eager as the dogs are to spend time in that room.
Every morning this week, I have even invited them to join me there as I get ready for work.
It is the very best way to start my day.
Do your pets supervise your morning routine?
Will you be my family?
This is Frankie. If he lived with me, I would call him Frank the Tank.
I had the pleasure of making Frankie’s acquaintance during the recent Dogs on the Lawn event at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
He was hanging out with the puppies and mama dog who are also currently available for adoption through Midwest Adopt-a-Bull.
Of course, it’s impossible to resist adorable, fat puppies, but I have to say Frankie was my favorite dog to spend time with that day.
He’s a big guy with a kind face, and as I jogged him across the museum lawn at the end of the day, it occurred to me that Frankie would make one heck of a jogging partner.
Currently, Frankie lives in a foster home with multiple dogs and a toddler. His foster mama says he loves children and that he would do best as an only dog or with a submissive female.
He originally came to Midwest Adopt-a-Bull from North Dakota with his sister. She has found her forever home, but Frankie is still looking.
Do you know someone who would like to make this big, sweet boy their own?
Please share Frankie’s story with your social networks!
Interested parties can learn more about him at MidwestAdoptaBull.com.
Luke said c’est la vie to his golden locks.
In the hopes that the weather will soon get warm and stay that way, Luke recently got the shortest haircut he has ever had.
My goals with this ‘do were:
- To reduce summer shedding
- To lengthen the typical time between grooms
- To limit his opportunities to accumulate debris (especially the thorny kind)
But getting Luke shorn extra short also came with another benefit.
The groomer found a stray staple in one of the scars from his recent lump removals.
Apparently, the vet missed this staple on the follow-up visit. It may be why the swelling around that particular incision site never completely subsided.
All is well now, though. The vet removed the staple, and Luke is now living proof that regular grooming is good for more than aesthetics and comfort. Regular grooming can help uncover health issues before they become a problem.
Big thanks to the groomer at Kennel Creek Pet Resort for being thorough with our Luke!
Has your groomer ever discovered something strange on your pet?
Even you can make your own dog clothes.
Because I’m a sucker for upcycling and DIY, the rag bin at the recent Dogs on the Lawn event at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art caught my eye.
I had read in the event schedule that one of the activities involved making shirts for your dog, but I didn’t know exactly what that meant.
I was thinking blank doggy tees and magic markers.
But the art students leading this activity were far more crafty than that!
They clearly had figured out what we have all known for a long time:
Dog apparel is expensive in the same way as women’s swimwear and lingerie. You pay a premium price for very little fabric because it’s cute.
For the art students, a way around investing in a bunch of pre-made doggy shirts was to upcycle old fabric. Their rag bin consisted of various shapes, sizes and colors of well-worn and soft T-shirts.
Next to the bin were several patterns for cutting the cloth into no-sew, homemade doggy duds.
Because I didn’t have any of the wayward dogs with me and the event was winding down, I grabbed a yellow shirt sleeve that seemed big enough for an elderpin to squeeze into.
Then, I proceeded to the screen printing area.
Guests could choose one of several patterns and colors. There was a pretty cute outline of a dog with a heart design, but I chose something more representative of this particular day.
I picked a shuttlecock, a locally-understood symbol of the Nelson, which has a giant shuttlecock sculpture on the lawn.
helped me screen printed the piece of fabric for me and pinned it to a clothesline with everyone else’s so the ink could dry.
I was pleased with the result. But back at home, I realized quickly that even a stretched out T-shirt sleeve is a bit too snug for an elderpin.
Nevertheless, the project did not go to waste. It makes a very nice neck band for one Charlie “Chetty” Machete.
And the color suits him well, since he is undoubtedly a yellow dog.
Have you ever made your own dog clothes or done screen printing at home?
If you want to upcycle the scraps in your rag bin, check out this eHow article about making old dog clothes from things you have around the house.
To try your hand at DIY screen printing, try out this Instructable.
Each month, Wayward Dogs highlights a story from Missouri’s Puppies for Parole program, a nationally renowned model for saving shelter dogs while helping human offenders. Instead of focusing on an adoptable P4P canine graduate, today’s post looks at a new way that this program will benefit people and dogs in Missouri.
From Shelter Dogs to Therapy Dogs
A recent partnership announced between the Missouri Department of Corrections (DOC) and Bridle Ridge Acres, a comprehensive health care center in Hillsboro, will connect animals from the state’s Puppies for Parole program and children with special needs.
Owned and operated by Community Treatment Inc. (COMTREA), Bridle Ridge is a 45-acre campus that will offer general practice medical care, dental care for children, behavioral health care, mental health care, substance abuse care and family therapy, as well as equine and canine therapy.
“Animal Assisted Intervention is a promising frontier in health and mental health,” says Judy Finnegan, COMTREA associate vice president.
“We are so pleased that through our partnership with the Department of Corrections,” she says, “COMTREA will have specially trained ‘helper dogs’ that will benefit many in our community. It seems like this partnership completes a circle: A dog is saved – a dog is trained and a person in need is helped.”
Following basic obedience training with offender handlers at Potosi Correctional Center, specially chosen Puppies for Parole dogs will go through additional professional training for canine therapy.
Certain selected dogs will also be offered to nursing homes, schools, hospitals and other institutions.
According to DOC Director George Lombardi, this partnership is an ideal arrangement.
“Since the program’s inception, it’s always been a vision of mine to have our offenders train dogs for those with special needs,” he says. “This partnership is a natural fit for us, and I hope it serves as a catalyst for many other relationships with organizations that assist those with special needs.”
Do you agree with me that this a great development for Puppies for Parole? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
To browse adoptable P4P graduates, check out the currently available dogs.
It’s 5 o’clock somewhere, right?
Yes, Luke. Yes, it is.
But it doesn’t matter, your beer is alcohol-free, and it doesn’t even require that nifty bottle opener you wear on your collar.
So, go ahead, guzzle some Bowser Beer. Lap it up at the beginning of a hard day. Use it like gravy, even, on your kibble.
The other guys are doing it, too.
I’ve known about the dog-friendly Bowser Beer for a while, but I had not run into any locally until last weekend’s Dogs on the Lawn event at the Nelson-Atkins Museum.
For just a few dollars, I grabbed a bottle of the Beefy Brown Ale for my boys to try.
According to the label, the suggested serving size is one bottle for medium to large dogs and half a bottle for small dogs. However, even the proprietors of the food truck for dogs where I bought it said they don’t give their two labs that much beer.
They suggested a splash here and there, maybe drizzled over some kibble. Just refrigerate after opening, they advised.
I broke out the bottle the very next day. Before pouring some in a dish for the dogs, I tasted it myself.
I found it watery and slightly sweet, not so beefy.
Scooby tried it next. Although puzzled at first, he soon lapped it up eagerly.
Luke then had pretty much the same reaction.
Finally, Charlie “Chetty” Machete got his portion. He was least impressed of all, licking at the bowl and then looking up at me, as if to say, “Where’s the beef?”
The next morning, I poured a little Bowser Beer over everyone’s dry food. That did seem to make mealtime significantly more exciting.
Although I don’t see us buying Bowser Beer by the case, I think it’s a brilliant item for a dog-oriented food truck to stock. I’m sure Good Dog 2 Go will do great business at pet-friendly races and other summer events.
Besides the novelty, one reason someone may want to give their dogs Bowser Beer is for the glucosamine.
Glucosamine HCL is the fourth ingredient on the label, after water, beef and malt extract. The only other three ingredients are common preservatives: citric acid, sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate.
I could also see how incorporating Bowser Beer into a dog’s diet – regularly or as an infrequent treat – could help boost a dog’s water intake or help make liquid medicine go down a little easier.
Bowser Beer is made in the U.S.A. with all domestically-sourced products. You can learn more at BowserBeer.com.
Would you let your dogs try Bowser Beer?
I have no affiliation with Bowser Beer. I simply bought some and wanted to share my experience!
Don’t be fooled by that headline.
I did not take any of my dogs to the museum.
But on Saturday, a lot of Kansas City folks did – well, they went at least as far as the the museum lawn.
Dogs on the Lawn was a first time event hosted by the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
Festivities included paws-on art projects, DIY dog apparel decoration and a few pet-friendly vendors including Kansas City’s brand new food truck for dogs.
People with dogs got to participate in paw painting – finger painting for dogs. The results were very colorful and abstract, but all the pet parents seemed proud.
Those interested in more serious art inspired by their animals could order a custom portrait from Ashley Corbello, a local artist who specializes in pet paintings.
I decided I would like Ashley to immortalize Scooby the elderpin in a painting sometime soon.
But in the meantime, I headed to the DIY screen print area, where local art students were helping folks customize cloth accessories for their pets.
With the yellow dog project in mind, I chose a fabric scrap that I thought might work as a t-shirt for Scooby.
For decoration, I chose the shuttlecock, which is a nod to the famous sculpture that lives on the Nelson-Atkins lawn.
The real reason I came to Dogs on the Lawn, however, was to
play with the puppies help at the Midwest Adopt-a-Bull table.
The group currently has five adorable pit mix puppies available for adoption. Three of them attended this event, along with their mama and another adoptable adult male.
The puppies were such a big hit that by the time I got to the event, they were pretty much crashed out. (I picked them all up and snuggled them to my chest, anyway.)
The coolest thing I discovered at Dogs on the Lawn was Kansas City’s first food truck for dogs.
I grabbed a bottle for the boys at home!
Come back tomorrow to see how they liked the brew!
Although we missed each other, Our Waldo Bungie’s Emily and adoptable Moby the Wonderdog also attended Dogs on the Lawn. Check out the post here.
Do you hate dandelions?
I don’t. In fact, I love them.
As I inspected the garden last weekend, I was thrilled to see quite a few dandelions sprouting.
Although we don’t use weedkillers, we don’t get a lot of dandelions.
That’s probably because I like to pull them. And when I do, I try to yank out the whole plant, root and all, well before their heads turn into those fluffy seed puffs. That helps keep the overall population down.
In addition to removing them where you don’t want them, pulling dandelions provides a seasonal treat that’s packed with minerals and nutrients.
If you have been reading this blog long, you know I’m a fan of wild edible plants.
I’m especially fond of dandelions, which are plentiful and trending for foodies. Over the past year, I have seen bags of dandelion greens on the shelves at Whole Foods and dandelion salads on the menus at restaurants. (I tend to gulp at the price.)According to Whole Dog Journal, dandelions can also be beneficial for dogs.
Last weekend’s dandelion haul wasn’t massive – just about 15 young plants, none of which had flowered.
But that was enough. Cleaning dandelions takes a while, especially if you don’t plan to throw anything away.
The entire dandelion plant is edible, although the greens can be a little bitter.
I cleaned mine by soaking them three times in water and then scrubbing all of the dirt from them.
Then, I snipped their roots for roasting and gathered the greens in a bowl.
I haven’t turned my roasted roots into a liver-cleansing tea just yet, but I have gotten use from the greens.
Last night, I snuck some greens between layers of cheese in a batch of nachos. I called ‘em Dandy Nachos.
And on Easter, I used the greens to garnish a batch of deviled eggs.
As promised, see below for the deviled eggs recipe. It’s one of my famous, inexact recipes, so you won’t need any measuring cups.
Deviled Nest Eggs
What you’ll need:
As many boiled eggs as you want (Remember, each whole egg makes two deviled eggs)
- Wasabi mayonaise (Available at Trader Joe’s)
- Your favorite yellow mustard
- A handful of fresh dandelion greens
- Bowl and spoons for mixing
Carefully peel your boiled eggs – I find it’s best to do this while they are still warm. Slice each egg in half and separate the yolk from the white. Gather all of the yolks in a bowl. Once you have separated all of the eggs, you can mix up your filling. Simply add the yellow mustard and wasabi mayo and begin stirring. Start with a small amount of the condiments at first – no more than a teaspoon – and taste as you go along. You will know when the taste is right for you. Garnish each egg with two or three shreds of dandelion green and one or more capers. Each egg should resemble a little bird nest with very tiny eggs. Sprinkle paprika lightly over the whole batch.